The bar exam is a multi-day marathon in which you will be tested on a wide range of legal topics, both in multiple choice form and in written essay questions. The Uniform Bar Exam (UBE) is administered in a majority of jurisdictions throughout the country (California, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Virginia and a handful of other states/territories continue to offer their own version of the bar exam). The bar exam is made up of two parts – multiple choice (MBE) and essays. The Multistate Bar Exam (MBE) asks 200 questions over six hours with respect to seven topics: Civil Procedure, Criminal Law and Procedure, Constitutional Law, Contracts, Evidence, Property, and Torts. In UBE jurisdictions, the essay component consists of six essay questions, which might cover any of the seven MBE topics and/or five additional subjects – Business Associations (Corporations, Agency, Partnerships, LLCs), Family Law, Trusts and Estates, Secured Transactions, and Conflicts of Law. The essay portion also includes the Multistate Performance Test (MPT), which consists of two 90-minute tasks requiring the application of fundamental lawyering skills in a realistic situation.

The non-UBE jurisdictions all follow a similar format – with the MBE one day and essays the second. Non-UBE jurisdictions test state-specific law in their essays in many of the same subject areas mentioned above.

Bar Exam Related Courses

Applied Legal Studies offers students a review of all seven subjects currently tested on the Multistate Bar Examination (MBE). For each subject, students review a critical portion of legal doctrine, followed by detailed in-class analysis of actual MBE questions. The final exam in the course consists of multiple-choice questions designed in the manner of Multistate Bar Examination questions. This four-credit course is especially helpful for students who may feel extra anxiety about multiple choice questions.

Legal Analysis for the Bar Exam – Essay Questions introduces students to the thought process and writing skills needed for success on the essay portion of the bar examination.

Legal Analysis for the February Bar Exam provides students who intend to graduate at the end of the Fall semester with an introduction to all aspects of the bar exam. The course includes review of three MBE topics - Property, Contracts, and Torts - along with multiple-choice practice in these subject areas; essay writing and review for each subject area; and a practice Multistate Performance Test.

Multistate Performance Test Preparation introduces students to the MPT. This course enhances you ability to identify issues, analyze and synthesize legal authority, use facts in legal analysis, write for a specific audience, organize your thoughts, apply legal reasoning, and maintain good time management.

In addition, after graduation, Dean McDermott runs a free program to help students prepare over the summer. The program provides lunch, a supportive network of fellow students and alumni, and a constructive environment for students to take practice timed essay questions and receive feedback.

Faculty Contacts: Deans Crowley, Leary, McDermott